Preparing for our enhanced future


(forthcoming) Journal of Medical Licensure and Discipline. Rapid advances in human genetics raise the prospect that one day we may be able to develop genetic enhancements to promote a diverse range of phenotypes (e.g. health, intelligence, behaviour, etc.). Perhaps the biggest challenge that genetic enhancements pose for medical practitioners is that they will compel us to re-think a good deal of the conventional wisdom of the status quo. Radical enhancements are likely to have this affect for a variety of reasons. Firstly, the status quo is premised (at least in large part) on a sharp distinction between treatment and enhancement; a distinction that at least some genetic enhancements will call into question. Secondly, the prospect of radical enhancements requires us to keep an open mind concerning how we conceive of the harm of non-intervention (i.e. the harm of the status quo). And thirdly, some enhancements might compromise the preservation of personal identity. All of these issues may have important consequences for State Medical Boards, ranging from the way we view the aspiration to prevent harm and ensure reasonable standards of care, to malpractice, continuing competency and medical specialization.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 92,283

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

  • Only published works are available at libraries.

Similar books and articles

Enhancement and the ethics of development.Allen Buchanan - 2008 - Kennedy Institute of Ethics Journal 18 (1):pp. 1-34.
Genetic Enhancement and Parental Obligation.Larry A. Herzberg - 2007 - Philosophy in the Contemporary World 14 (2):98-111.
Moral enhancement.Thomas Douglas - 2008 - Journal of Applied Philosophy 25 (3):228-245.
Are “Genetic Enhancements” Really Enhancements?Darren Shickle - 2000 - Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 9 (3):342-352.
Virtue Ethics and Prenatal Genetic Enhancement.Colin Farrelly - 2007 - Studies in Ethics, Law, and Technology 1 (1).
One danger of biomedical enhancements.Alex Rajczi - 2008 - Bioethics 22 (6):328–336.


Added to PP

155 (#123,385)

6 months
25 (#115,808)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Author's Profile

Colin Farrelly
Queen's University

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references